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On Wednesday of this week, I spoke at the New England Social Media Workshop, sponsored by Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, PRSA Yankee Chapter, the New Hampshire Hospital Association and the New England Society for Healthcare Communications. The Twitter activity at the workshop was terrific. If you’re interested, I created a storify that curates the majority of the Tweets from the event – #NESocialMedia Workshop Tweets Storify.

Meanwhile, I thought I’d share some of my favorite Tweets from the event. They crack me up! Seriously. This was such a fun and cooperative crowd – and that’s what you need for a great workshop.

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Some of you may know that I regularly contribute articles to eHealthcare Strategy & Trends magazine – a publication of Plain-English Health Care. I also have the pleasure of serving on the publication’s editorial advisory board. eHealthcare Strategy & Trends is collaborating with the team at Geonetric to conduct the 2016 Digital Marketing Trends in Healthcare Survey, the most comprehensive survey on digital marketing in the healthcare industry.

Screen Shot 2016-07-26 at 4.13.51 PMThe survey represents an important opportunity for you to give your input and help shape the marketing strategies of healthcare organizations across the country. The 2016 Digital Marketing Trends in Healthcare survey is officially open – and they want thought leaders and practitioners like you to participate!

This year they’ve created a leaner survey that takes only 10 minutes to compete. Those few minutes are well worth your time and will buy you early access to the survey results, a chance to win one of four $100 Amazon gift cards, and the first 100 respondents from healthcare organizations will receive a printed copy of the results eBook (they had more than 250 respondents last time around)!

I invite you to do your part and participate in the 2016 Digital Marketing Trends in Healthcare survey. Thanks!

Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 4.32.35 PMHealthcare IT News has published the 2016 #HIT100 list as compiled by Michael Planchart (@theEHRguy). Each year the list is crowdsourced on Twitter through a process where members of the healthcare IT/healthcare social media community nominate individuals whom they consider to be influentials in this space.

Below is the full 2016 #HIT100 list. If you’re on Twitter and care about #healthIT, #HITsm, #hcsm or #healthcare, you’ll find these people to be excellent resources. As Planchart has stated, the spirit of the #HIT100 is to make introductions. So consider yourself introduced! One additional note: Many of the professionals on this list are members of the #HCLDR community/chat that takes place every Tuesday evening. In addition to following these folks on Twitter, you can engage them in conversation by joining the #HCLDR chat (I am a huge fan and an occasional participant, schedule permitting). Colin Hung (#8) @Colin_Hung and Joseph Babaian (#47) @JoeBabaian are co-moderators of the chat.

1. Mandi Bishop @MandiBPro

2. Christoph Trappe @CTrappe

3. William G. Esslinger, Jr. @billesslinger

4. John Nosta @JohnNosta

5. Linda Stotsky @EMRanswers

6. Mario Hyland @interopguy

7. John Lynn @techguy

8. Colin Hung @Colin_Hung

9. Nick Adkins @nickisnpdx  

10. Bill Bunting @WTBunting

11. Brad Justus @Brad_Justus

12. Nick Van Terheyden @drnic1

13. Andy DeLao @CancerGeek

14. Max Stroud @Mmaxwellstroud

15. Charles Webster @wareflo

16. JennDenard @JennDennard

17. Wen Dombrowski @healthcareWen

18. Rasu Shrestha @RasuShrestha

19. Steve Sisko @shimcode

20. Bernadette Keefe @nxtstop1

21. Mylea Charvat @MyleaCharvat

22. Regina Holliday @ReginaHolliday

23. Richard Corbridge @R1chardatron

24. Brian Ahier @ahier

25. Dan Dunlop @dandunlop

26. Matthew Fisher @Matt_R_Fisher

27. James Legan @jimmie_vanagon

28. Joe Lavelle @Resultant

29. Gregg Masters @2healthguru

30. Michael Planchart @theEHRGuy

31. Sarah Bennight @sarahbennight

32. Keith Boone @motorcycle_guy

33. Jared Johnson @jaredpiano

34. David Chou @dchou1107

35. Dave Chase @chasedave

36. Chad Johnson @OchoTex

37. Nrip Nihalani @nrip

38. Shereese Maynard @ShereesePubHlth

39. Sean Erreger @StuckonSW

40. Jon McBride @jamcbride

41. Janice McCallum @janicemccallum

42. Lynn Vos @LynnVos

43. Geeta Nayyar @gnayyar

44. Eric Topol @EricTopol

45. Elin Silveous @ElinSilveous

46. Dan Munro @DanMunro

47. Joseph Babaian @JoeBabaian

48. Jane Sarasohn-Kahn @healthythinker

49. Mark Watts @markwattscra

50. Debbie Esslinger @DebbieEsslinger

51. Shahid Shah @ShahidNShah

52. VideoDoc @VideoDocEU

53. Ryan Witt @WittRZ

54. Don Lee @dflee30

55. Ryan Lucas @dz45tr

56. Dave deBronkart @ePatientDave

57. Gia Sison @giasison

58. Marie Ennis-O’Connor @JBBC

59. Lygeia Ricciardi @Lygeia

60. John Sharp @JohnSharp

61. Karen DeSalvo @KBDeSalvo

62. David Harlow @healthblawg

63. Melissa McCool @melissaxxmccool

64. Naomi Fried @NaomiFried

65. Erin Wold @ErinEWold

66. Tamara StClaire @drstclaire

67. Liam Farrell @drlfarrell

68. DIrk Stanley @dirkstanley

69. Susannah Fox @SusannahFox

70. Iris Thiele Isip Tan @endocrine_witch

71. Janet Kennedy @GetSocialHealth

72. Shafiq Rab @CIOSHAFIQ

73. Christina Farr @chrissyfarr

74. Sherry Reynolds @Cascadia

75. Andy Slavitt @ASlavitt

76. Casey Quinlan @MightyCasey

77. James Edwards @jameyedwards

78. Jim Rawson @Jim_Rawson_MD

79. Leonard Kish @leonardkish

80. Kate Huvane Gamble @khgamble

81. Health Standards @HealthStandards

82. Tony Heffernan @BeeForBattens

83. Cari McLean @carimclean

84. Brian Eastwood @Brian_Eastwood

85. Christina Lizaso @btrfly12

86. Corinne Stroum @healthcora

87. Michael Joseph @HealthData4All

88. Galen Healthcare @GalenHealthcare

89. Stacy Goebel @stacygoebel

90. Michelle Kearns @ShinyShella

91. Matthew Loxton @mloxton

92. Rafael Grossman @ZGJR

93. Jon Mertz @jonmertz

94. Samir Qamar @Samir_Qamar

95. Sue Schade @sgschade

96. Matt Katz @subatomicdoc

97. Tom Sullivan @SullyHIT

98. Denise Silber @health20Paris

99. Colleen Young @colleen_young

100. Graham Grieve @GrahamGrieve 

While flying on Delta Airlines recently, I discovered that the June Issue of Delta Sky magazine included a special section on cancer research. As you might imagine, the section was populated with a number of ads from cancer programs, institutes and cancer-related organizations across the country. I clipped the ads and thought I would share them with you here. The variety of approaches to these ads is interesting.

One caveat: I scanned these ads so the quality has been diminished. They looked much better in the magazine.

Memorial Sloan Kettering

Prostate Laser Center

Wexner Medical Center

Center for Restorative Breast

Myeloma Institute

Willis Knighton Proton Therapy Center

Lung Cancer Foundation

MD Anderson



Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 12.20.49 PMI’ve written about the BUILD Health Challenge in the past. You can see my prior post by clicking here. The BUILD Health Challenge is an initiative designed to foster and expand meaningful partnerships among health systems, community-based organizations, local health departments, and other organizations that impact health in the community.

The Advisory Board Company, the de Beaumont Foundation, the Colorado Health Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation have teamed up to improve community health and promote health equity through this effort. Overall, they seek to catalyze meaningful progress toward total population health. An important aspect of this effort is addressing the upstream factors that impact health. Often referred to as the social determinants of health, they include factors as diverse as early childhood development, economic opportunity, regulation and policy, the built environment, transportation and infrastructure, educational attainment, public safety, and housing.

While attending the Practical Playbook’s National Meeting in May, several participants in the BUILD Health Challenge (grantees) were recorded on video, speaking about their local initiatives. These videos do an amazing job capturing the essence of the BUILD Health Challenge. The examples of collaboration to improve the health of populations within these communities are outstanding. It is also great to hear how these organizations are directly addressing the social determinants of health! The first time I viewed these videos I knew that I would want to share a few of them on my blog. So, here you go.

IMG_6009I’ve long been a strong proponent of conducting market research prior to the development of any significant marketing program. Research should inform both the marketing plan and creative development process. Similarly, I’ve always believed that a marketer who thinks he or she has the answers, without tapping into insights from the target audience(s), is a fool. The genius is out there in the marketplace. As marketers, it is our job to tap into that genius – to recognize it when we hear it – to know how to access it. Often that means that we have to sell the powers that be on the importance of investing in good market research. And if the money isn’t there for high-brow market research, hit the streets and do some grass roots, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants research. There have been many times when I’ve had to resort to approaching local employers and offered to feed their staff (usually pizza) in exchange for the opportunity to conduct a focus group over lunch – or to conduct creative testing. I’ve also stood on a street corner in Boston intercepting consumers and offered a crisp $5 bill for five minutes of their time so we could test various ad concepts with them. (You can learn a lot for $200.) Getting this feedback is that important! And it is amazing the things we learn – the things we would have never anticipated.

Screen Shot 2016-07-11 at 4.41.04 PMA couple months ago, one of the editors from Strategic Health Care Marketing (Plain English Media), Lisa Ellis, contacted me and asked if Jeff Steblea and I would consider writing an article about the role that research played in the development of Lawrence General Hospital’s recent “brand elevation” campaign. This came on the heels of Jeff Steblea (Market Street Research) and Jill McDonald Halsey (Lawrence General Hospital) presenting this very same case study at the Western New England Healthcare Marketing Symposium (WNEHMS). I immediately turned to Jeff and Jill and asked if they would be interested in collaborating on the article. They enthusiastically agreed.

In truth, I did very little of the writing. I simply provided Jeff with a case study I had written previously as part of an awards submission, and he used that as background information as he prepared a first draft. It was an excellent draft. From there, Jill and I provided input and suggestions that led to the final document. Jill offered far more cogent input than I. The collaboration was painless and we quickly had something we felt good about submitting to the publication. Late last week the article was published online and it will appear in the July Issue of Strategic Health Care Marketing.

The article tells the story of how research was woven into the campaign development process – including both quantitative and qualitative research, focus groups, creative testing and telephone surveys, and concluding with on the street intercepts at a local shopping center. (Yes, I was passing out $5 bills in front a Starbucks.) The research plan and methodology gave the leadership of the hospital confidence in the creative development process, and took much of the subjectivity out of the approval process. At every step of the process, we had data! The voice of the consumer guided us all along the way.

I invite you to review the article online using this link: “Realizing Vision Through Research: How Lawrence General Hospital Used Research to Help Elevate Its Brand.”

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On July 27th, 2016, I’ll be participating in what promises to be a spectacular social media workshop in Lebanon, New Hampshire – “Social Media for Branding and Crisis Communication.” The workshop is being sponsored by Dartmouth-Hitchcock, PRSA Yankee Chapter, the New England Society for Healthcare Communications (NESHCo) and the New Hampshire Hospital Association (NHHA). My firm is fortunate to work with three of the four sponsors.

I have the honor of leading the session on “Communications Strategies to Build Your Social Media Presence.” If all goes according to plan, it will be a very dynamic workshop with a lot of give and take. I plan to involve the audience throughout the presentation – crowd sourcing solutions to the various scenarios I present. Following my session, there will be a presentation on the role of social media in crisis communication. It promises to be an information and engaging afternoon in New Hampshire! I hope to see you there. And remember, snacks and lunch are provided.

To register for the event, use this link: http://www.bit.ly/DHMCWorkshop. The cost is $69 for members and $79 for non-members.


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